|Number of teams||18|
|Level on pyramid||1|
|Relegation to||Eerste Divisie|
|Current champions|| Ajax (35th title) |
|Most championships||Ajax (35 titles)|
|Most appearances||Pim Doesburg (687)|
|Top goalscorer||Willy van der Kuijlen (311)|
|TV partners||List of broadcasters|
|Current: 2021–22 Eredivisie|
The Eredivisie (Dutch pronunciation: [ˈeːrədivizi] ; "Honour Division" or "Premier Division") is the highest level of professional football in the Netherlands. The league was founded in 1956, two years after the start of professional football in the Netherlands. It is considered one of the best European leagues and widely regarded as one of the better leagues in the world. As of the 2020–21 season, it is ranked the 7th best league in Europe by UEFA.
The Eredivisie consists of 18 clubs. Each club meets every other club twice during the season, once at home and once away. At the end of each season, the two clubs at the bottom are automatically relegated to the second level of the Dutch league system, the Eerste Divisie (First Division), while the champion and runner-up of the Eerste Divisie are automatically promoted to the Eredivisie. The club finishing third from the bottom of the bottom of the Eredivisie goes to separate promotion/relegation play-offs with eight high-placed clubs from the Eerste Divisie.
The winner of the Eredivisie claims the Dutch national championship. Ajax has won the most titles, with 35 national titles. PSV Eindhoven are next with 24, and Feyenoord follow with 15. Since 1965, these three clubs have won all but three Eredivisie titles (the 1981 and 2009 titles went to AZ and FC Twente won the 2010 title). Ajax, PSV and Feyenoord are known as the "Big Three" or "Traditional Top Three" of Dutch football. They are the only clubs in their current forms to have never been relegated out of the Eredivisie since its formation. A fourth club, FC Utrecht, is the product of a 1970 merger between three of that city's clubs, one of which, VV DOS, had also never been relegated out of the Eredivisie.
From 1990 to 1999, the official name of the league was PTT Telecompetitie (after the sponsor, PTT Telecom), which was changed to KPN Telecompetitie (because PTT Telecom changed its name to KPN Telecom in 1999) and to KPN Eredivisie in 2000. From 2002 to 2005, the league was called the Holland Casino Eredivisie. Since the 2005–06 season, the league has been sponsored by the Sponsorloterij (lottery), but for legal reasons its name could not be attached to the league (the Dutch government was against the name, because the Eredivisie would, after Holland Casino's sponsorship, yet again be sponsored by a company providing games of chance). On 8 August 2012 it was made public that tycoon Rupert Murdoch had secured the rights to the Eredivisie for 12 years at the expense of 1 billion euros, beginning in the 2013–14 season.Within this deal the five largest Eredivisie clubs should receive 5 million euros per year for the duration of the contract. In 2020, the Eredivisie was abandoned due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
From the foundation of the Dutch national football championship in 1898 until 1954, the title was decided through play-offs by a handful of clubs who had previously won their regional league.The competition was purely an amateur one; the Royal Dutch Football Association (KNVB) rejected any form of payment and suspended players who were caught receiving salary or transfer fees. The call for professional football grew in the early fifties after many national team members left to play abroad in search for financial benefits. The KNVB would usually suspend these players, preventing them from appearing for the Dutch national team. After the North Sea flood of 1953, the Dutch players abroad (mainly playing in the French league) organised a charity match against the French national team in Paris. The match was boycotted by the KNVB, but after the assembled Dutch players defeated the French (2–1), the Dutch public witnessed the heights that could be achieved through professional football. To serve the growing interest, a dissident professional football association (the NBVB) and league were founded for the 1954–55 season. On 3 July 1954, the KNVB met with a group of concerned amateur club chairmen, who feared the best players would join the professional teams. The meeting, dubbed the slaapkamerconferentie ('bedroom conference'), led to the Association reluctantly accepting semi-professionalism.
Meanwhile, both the KNVB and the NBVB started their separate competition. The first professional football match was contested between Alkmaar and Venlo.The leagues went on for eleven rounds, before a merger was negotiated between the two federations in November. Both leagues were cancelled and a new, combined competition emerged immediately. De Graafschap, Amsterdam, Alkmaar and Fortuna '54 from the NBVB were accepted to the new league. Other clubs merged, which led to new names like Rapid J.C., Holland Sport and Roda Sport. The first (semi-)professional league was won by Willem II. For the 1956–57 season, the KNVB abandoned the regional league system. The Eredivisie was founded, in which the eighteen best clubs nationwide directly played for the league title without play-offs. The inaugural members of the Eredivisie in 1956 were Ajax, BVC, BVV, DOS, EVV, Elinkwijk, SC Enschede, Feijenoord, Fortuna '54, GVAV, MVV, NAC, NOAD, PSV, Rapid J.C., Sparta, VVV '03 and Willem II. Ajax was the first team to claim the title that season.
|No. of seasons|
|1st season of|
|No. of seasons|
of current spell
|Eredivisie titles||National titles||Last title|
|Go Ahead Eagles||Deventer||10,000||promoted*||1963–64||32||2021–22||1||0||4||1933|
|Sparta Rotterdam a||Rotterdam||11,026||8th||1956–57||56||2019–20||3||1||6||1959|
|FC Twente c||Enschede||30,205||10th||1956–57||63||2019–20||3||1||1||2010|
|FC Utrecht bd||Utrecht||23,750||6th||1970–71||52||1970–71||52||0||0||-|
|Willem II a||Tilburg||14,500||14th||1956–57||45||2014–15||8||0||3||1955|
* Cambuur finished first and Go Ahead Eagles finished second in the 2020-21 Eerste Divisie. NEC finished 7th and defeated NAC Breda in the playoff final.
a Founding member of the Eredivisie
b Never been relegated from the Eredivisie
c Founding member of the Eredivisie (as Sportclub Enschede)
d Founding member of the Eredivisie (as VV DOS and USV Elinkwijk)
|Ajax||35||23||1917–18, 1918–19, 1930–31, 1931–32, 1933–34, 1936–37, 1938–39, 1946–47, 1956–57, 1959–60, 1965–66, 1966–67, 1967–68, 1969–70, 1971–72, 1972–73, 1976–77, 1978–79, 1979–80, 1981–82, 1982–83, 1984–85, 1989–90, 1993–94, 1994–95, 1995–96, 1997–98, 2001–02, 2003–04, 2010–11, 2011–12, 2012–13, 2013–14, 2018–19, 2020–21|
|PSV Eindhoven||24||14||1928–29, 1934–35, 1950–51, 1962–63, 1974–75, 1975–76, 1977–78, 1985–86, 1986–87, 1987–88, 1988–89, 1990–91, 1991–92, 1996–97, 1999–00, 2000–01, 2002–03, 2004–05, 2005–06, 2006–07, 2007–08, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2017–18|
|Feyenoord||15||21||1923–24, 1927–28, 1935–36, 1937–38, 1939–40, 1960–61, 1961–62, 1964–65, 1968–69, 1970–71, 1973–74, 1983–84, 1992–93, 1998–99, 2016–17|
|HVV Den Haag||10||1||1890–91, 1895–96, 1899–1900, 1900–01, 1901–02, 1902–03, 1904–05, 1906–07, 1909–10, 1913–14|
|Sparta Rotterdam||6||–||1908–09, 1910–11, 1911–12, 1912–13, 1914–15, 1958–59|
|RAP||5||3||1891–92, 1893–94, 1896–97, 1897–98, 1898–99|
|Go Ahead Eagles||4||5||1916–17, 1921–22, 1929–30, 1932–33|
|Koninklijke HFC||3||3||1889–90, 1892–93, 1894–95|
|Willem II||3||1||1915–16, 1951–52, 1954–55|
|HBS Craeyenhout||3||–||1903–04, 1905–06, 1924–25|
|Heracles Almelo||2||1||1926–27, 1940–41|
|ADO Den Haag||2||–||1941–42, 1942–43|
|Roda JC Kerkrade*||1||2||1955–56|
|FC Den Bosch||1||1||1947–48|
|Quick Den Haag||1||–||1907–08|
* As Rapid JC.
|1st||–||Champions League Group Stage|
|2nd||–||Champions League 3rd qualifying round of the League Path.|
|3rd/4th||–||Conference League 3rd qualifying round|
|4th–7th/5th–8th||Europa League||4th vs 7th and 5th vs 6th or 5th vs 8th and 6th vs 7th; the two winners play each other to qualify for: |
Europa Conference League 2nd qualifying round
|KNVB Cup winners||–||Europa League Play-off Round (Group stage if the Europa Conference League winners have already qualified for the UCL through their domestic league)|
|Position||Playoff||What happens next|
|16th||Nacompetitie||One Eredivisie team play the semi finals against an Eerste Divisie team. Who wins will compete in the poule final for a place in the Eredivisie.|
|17th-18th||–||Direct relegation to the Eerste Divisie|
|ADO Den Haag||12,561|
Since the beginning of the league, there have been three clubs with an attendance much higher than the others: Ajax, PSV and Feyenoord. Clubs like Heerenveen, FC Utrecht and FC Groningen also have fairly large fanbases. The regular season average league attendance was just over 7,000 in 1990, but this figure has risen sharply over the years thanks to the opening of new stadiums and the expansion of existing ones nationwide. Average attendance for the 2018–19 season was 18,010, with Ajax having the largest (52,987) and Excelsior having the smallest (4,223). Ajax's figures however differ from those provided by the Johan Cruyff Arena since the club counts all tickets sold instead of the number of people going through the turnstiles.
|Playing in the Eredivisie|
|Playing in the Eerste Divisie|
|Playing in the amateur leagues|
|Club has been disestablished or merged into another club|
|8.||Roda JC Kerkrade||44||1496||563||391||542||2080||1,39||2260||2208||+52|
|10.||ADO Den Haag||44||1480||489||378||613||1845||1,25||2114||2423||-309|
|17.||Go Ahead Eagles||31||1042||325||268||449||1243||1,19||1399||1701||-302|
|32.||FC Den Bosch||12||442||114||123||205||465||1,05||491||756||-265|
|Rank||Name||Games||Playing position||First match||Last match|
|Rank||Name||Goals||Games||Goals per game||Playing position||First goal||Last goal|
|1||Willy van der Kuijlen||311||545||0.57||Forward||1964–65||1981–82|
|5||Tonny van der Linden||208||-||-||Forward||1956–57||1966–67|
|1961–62||Dick Tol||27||FC Volendam|
|1965–66|| Willy van der Kuijlen |
|23|| PSV |
|1968–69|| Dick van Dijk |
|30|| FC Twente |
|1969–70||Willy van der Kuijlen||26||PSV|
|1972–73|| Cas Janssens |
|18|| NEC |
|1973–74||Willy van der Kuijlen||27||PSV|
|1983–84||Marco van Basten||28||Ajax|
|1984–85||Marco van Basten||22||Ajax|
|1985–86||Marco van Basten||37||Ajax|
|1986–87||Marco van Basten||31||Ajax|
|1990–91|| Romário |
|25|| PSV |
|1998–99||Ruud van Nistelrooy||31||PSV|
|1999–2000||Ruud van Nistelrooy||29||PSV|
|2001–02||Pierre van Hooijdonk||24||Feyenoord|
|2005–06||Klaas-Jan Huntelaar||33||SC Heerenveen/Ajax|
|2006–07||Afonso Alves||34||SC Heerenveen|
|2008–09||Mounir El Hamdaoui||23||AZ|
|2011–12||Bas Dost||32||SC Heerenveen|
|2013–14||Alfreð Finnbogason||29||SC Heerenveen|
|2018–19|| Luuk de Jong |
|28|| PSV |
|2019–20|| Steven Berghuis |
|15|| Feyenoord |
|Netherlands||ESPN; NOS||ESPN airs all matches live and the NOS broadcasts match summaries on the open channels NPO 1 and 3|
|Azerbaijan||CBC Sport||Live Eredivisie matches|
|Belgium|| Play Sports |
|Two matches per week, since 2015|
|Indian subcontinent||Dream11 and Eurosport||Two–three matches per week on Eurosport and FanCode|
|Albania||DigitAlb / SuperSport||Two matches per week and highlights|
|Poland|| Polsat Sport |
Polsat Sport Extra
Polsat Sport News
|2–5 matches (1–4 live) every week and highlights, since the 2002–03 season.|
|Turkey||Tivibu||Live Eredivisie matches|
|Russia||Telekanal Futbol||Live matches every week, two or three times|
|Balkans||Sport Klub||Live matches every week, two or three times|
|Portugal||Sport TV||Two or three live matches every week|
|Slovakia||Arena Sport||Two or three live matches every week|
|Austria, Germany||Sportdigital.tv, DAZN||Up to three matches per week, and highlights (mostly Ajax, PSV and Feyenoord matches)|
|South Korea||tvN||Live PSV matches|
|United Kingdom and Ireland||Premier Sports||Live Eredivisie matches|
|United States||ESPN+||Three live matches every week|
|Norway||Viasat Fotball||One match live on Sunday 11.30 CET|
|Lithuania||Sport1||Up to two matches per week and highlights|
|Bulgaria||Max Sport||Two or three live matches every week|
|Sub-Saharan Africa||ESPN||Three live matches every week, sometimes four|
|Latin America||ESPN||Two matches every week are broadcast live, one only on ESPN Play (WatchESPN in Brazil).|
|Indonesia||Mola TV||Up to four matches per week live and on demand, from 2020 to 2021.|
|Malaysia||Astro SuperSport||Up to three live matches every week.|
|Philippines||Tap DMV||Up to three live matches every week.|
|Singapore||Singtel TV||Up to three live matches every week.|
|MENA||Abu Dhabi Sports||Up to three live matches every week.|
|Vietnam||VTVCab, HTV||1990-2002, HTV broadcasting all matches. |
2019-present, Up to three live matches every week.
The following sixteen international tournaments were won by Eredivisie teams:
The UEFA Super Cup was founded by a Dutch reporter named Anton Witkamp and Ajax's 1973 win was the first time the tournament was contested officially.
The following 24 European finals took place at Dutch venues, or are scheduled to take place at them:
Alkmaar Zaanstreek, better known as AZ Alkmaar or simply AZ, is a Dutch professional football club from Alkmaar and the Zaanstreek. The club plays in the Eredivisie, the highest professional football league in the Netherlands, and hosts home matches at the AFAS Stadion.
Feyenoord Rotterdam is a Dutch professional football club in Rotterdam, which plays in the Eredivisie, the top tier in Dutch football. Founded as Wilhelmina in 1908, the club changed to various names before settling on being called after its neighbourhood in 1912 as SC Feijenoord, updated in 1974 to SC Feyenoord, and then to Feyenoord Rotterdam in 1978, when it split from the amateur club under its wing, SC Feyenoord. Since 1937, Feyenoord's home ground has been the Stadion Feijenoord, nicknamed De Kuip, one of the largest stadiums in the Netherlands.
Alles Door Oefening Den Haag, commonly known by the abbreviated name ADO Den Haag, is a Dutch association football club from the city of The Hague. They play in the Eerste Divisie, the second tier of Dutch football, following relegation from the Eredivisie in the 2020–21 season. The club was for a time known as FC Den Haag, with ADO representing the amateur branch of the club. Despite being from one of the traditional three large Dutch cities, it has not been able to match Ajax, Feyenoord or PSV in terms of success in the Eredivisie or in European competition. There is nonetheless a big rivalry with Ajax and Feyenoord. The Dutch words "Alles Door Oefening" translate into Everything Through Practice.
Football Club Twente is a Dutch professional football club from the city of Enschede. The club was formed in 1965 by the merger of 1926 Dutch champions, Sportclub Enschede and Enschedese Boys. They were the holders of the 2011 KNVB Cup and Johan Cruyff Shield trophies, and were Eredivisie champions in the 2009–10 season; the team has also finished as Eredivisie runner-up twice, was runner-up in the 1974–75 UEFA Cup, and has won the KNVB Cup three times. Twente's home ground since 1998 is De Grolsch Veste. Since 2019, the club has played in the Eredivisie, the top division of Dutch football.
Willem II, also known as Willem II Tilburg, is a Dutch football club based in Tilburg, Netherlands, whose team plays in the Eredivisie, the top tier in Dutch football. The club was founded on 12 August 1896 as Tilburgia. On 12 January 1898, the club was renamed Willem II after Dutch king William II of the Netherlands, who, as Prince of Orange and commander of the Dutch army, had his military headquarters in Tilburg during the Belgian uprising of 1830, spent much time in the city after becoming king, and died there.
The 2005–06 season of the Eredivisie began in August 2005 and ended in May 2006. PSV Eindhoven became champion on April 9, 2006. The season was overshadowed by the death of FC Utrecht player David di Tommaso.
The 2006–07 Eredivisie season began on August 18, 2006. The season saw PSV Eindhoven quickly building a gap with the other teams. After 20 matches, the club was 11 points ahead of AZ and 12 points ahead of Ajax. The lead quickly dissipated in the 13 matches that followed. A draw of PSV at FC Utrecht in the penultimate round saw AZ and Ajax catching up. The three clubs were all on 72 points from 33 matches, with the AZ on top due to goal difference. Ajax were second, PSV were third. AZ suffered a shock defeat at league minnows Excelsior Rotterdam in the final round, playing with 10 men after 15 minutes in the game. Ajax won 0–2 at Willem II, and PSV beat Vitesse 5–1. PSV and Ajax both finished on 75 points, but PSV finished first due to a better goal difference to end one of the most exciting and closest title races in many years.
The 2006–07 KNVB Cup was the 89th edition of the tournament. The competition started on 26 August 2006 and the final was held on 6 May 2007 at the Feyenoord Stadion in Rotterdam. The match between defending Cup winners Ajax and 3-time winners AZ finished 1–1 after regular time and after extra time. Ajax went on to win 8–7 on penalties and received the cup for the seventeenth time.
The history of Feyenoord, a Dutch football club formed in 1908, is among the longest and most successful in Dutch football. The club won their first national championship in 1924 and over nearly a century have won thirty major trophies. Feyenoord is based in the city of Rotterdam.
The 2005–06 KNVB Cup was the 88th edition of the premier knockout tournament in the Netherlands. The tournament started on 2 August 2005 and the final was held on 7 May 2006. Ajax beat PSV 2–1 in the final, winning the trophy for the sixteenth time.
The 2007–08 KNVB Cup was the 90th edition of the premier knockout tournament in the Netherlands. The competition started on 25 August 2007 and the final was held on 27 April 2008 at the Feijenoord Stadion in Rotterdam. Feyenoord defeated Roda JC 2–0 in the final, taking home the cup for the eleventh time.
The 2008–09 KNVB Cup was the 91st season of the Dutch national football knockout tournament. The defending champions were Feyenoord. The competition started on 30 August 2008 and ended with sc Heerenveen winning the Final in Rotterdam on 17 May 2009.
The 87th edition of the KNVB Cup started on 7 August 2004. The final was played on 29 May 2005. PSV beat Willem II 4–0, winning the trophy for the eighth time.
The 80th edition of the KNVB Cup started on August 12, 1997. The final was played on May 17, 1998 and saw Ajax beat PSV 5–0 and won the cup for the thirteenth time. A total of 60 clubs participated.
The 2009–10 KNVB Cup was the 92nd season of the Dutch national football knockout tournament. The competition began on 29 August 2009 with the matches of Round 1 and culminated with a double-leg Final on 25 April and 6 May 2010 respectively. Ajax won the final with a 6–1 on aggregate, winning their record 18th title.
The 2010–11 KNVB Cup was the 93rd season of the Dutch national football knockout tournament. The competition began on 18 August 2010 with the matches of Round 1 and ended with the final on 8 May 2011. AFC Ajax were the defending champions. The winners of the competition qualify for the play-off round of the 2011–12 UEFA Europa League. FC Twente claimed the cup after a 3–2 edge win over Ajax Amsterdam.
The 2011–12 KNVB Cup was the 94th season of the Dutch national football knockout tournament. The competition began on 24 August 2011 with the matches of Round 1 and ended with the final on 8 April 2012. FC Twente were the defending champions having won the cup the previous season. The winner PSV Eindhoven qualifies for the play-off round of the 2012–13 UEFA Europa League.
The 2012–13 KNVB Cup was the 95th season of the Dutch national football knockout tournament. The competition began on 21 August 2012 with the matches of Round 1 and ended with the final on 9 May 2013.
The 2013–14 KNVB Cup was the 96th season of the Dutch national football knockout tournament. The competition began on 28 August 2013 in the first round and concluded with the final on 20 April 2014.
The 2019–20 Eredivisie was the 64th season of the Dutch football league Eredivisie since its establishment in 1955. The season began on 2 August 2019 and was suspended on 12 March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic in the Netherlands. The season was abandoned on 24 April and declared void the following day.